May 15, 2011 10:23 PM by Shayla Perry
This week on an all new episode of Celebrity Apprentice, former winners of the NBC reality show return to help Donald Trump narrow the field from four finalists to two. Which celebs will be fighting for the top spot in next week’s season finale? Find out here!
The competition is coming to a close, and with four talented celebs remaining, Donald Trump gets a little help from some familiar faces to select the final two who will battle it out for the title of Celebrity Apprentice in the season finale.
After a super-sized two challenge episode, “The Jonz” are shocked to see their former team member, Meat Loaf emerge from the boardroom.
Also in shock is Marlee Matlin, who’s in tears after losing the task and the firing of Star Jones, which she did not expect.
As Lil Jon, John Rich, and Meat Loaf console her, Donald Trump walks in to tell the contestants that they’re immediately going to be interviewed by Joan Rivers, Bret Michaels, and Piers Morgan. After the interviews, two of them will be fired.
The first celeb to face the former winners is John Rich. Right away, Piers Morgan asks John which of the remaining celebs he’d eliminate. John suggests Meat Loaf, and when asked for another name, he chooses Marlee Matlin.
John is then asked what sets him apart from the others, and he begins to tell them about his strengths as a writer and fundraiser, which Piers Morgan doesn’t find exceptional, since he is a songwriter. Rich is also asked about his relationship with Lil Jon and whether or not he’d be able to compete with the teammate that he’s become so close to throughout the show, and the country singer says that while he respects the rapper and they’ll always be friends, he’s ultimately there to win for his charity, and that’s what he intends to do.
Next up is Lil Jon, and Bret Michaels asks him if his tendency to be to cool and calm under pressure will work against him if he makes it to the next phase of the competition, which Lil Jon doesn’t think it will. When Joan Rivers asks which contestants will be there in the end, surprisingly he names Marlee Matlin and John Rich. He’s then pressed on why he didn’t include himself. After explaining that he feels the decision may come down to the fundraising power of John Rich and Marlee Matlin, Lil Jon eventually expresses that he should be one of the last people standing.
Meat Loaf — or “Meat” as he likes to be called — sits before the panel and must immediately defend his tears throughout the show, which combined with his explosive anger, Piers Morgan feels is a detriment. Bret Michaels tells the rocker that both John Rich and Lil Jon “threw him under the bus,” and Meat Loaf fires back at his former teammates, saying that Lil Jon is creative, but lazy, and that before the competition, he didn’t even know who John Rich was (ouch!).
Finally, Marlee Matlin impresses the former winners, but Piers Morgan notes that after the fundraising task where she raised the most amount of money, she’s somewhat faltered. Marlee disagrees, and says that she’s able to win it all if put through to the next round.
So who stays and who goes?
In the boardroom, the final four sit before Donald Trump. Trump asks John Rich who should be picked for the final two, and John names himself and Marlee Matlin. When asked the same, Lil Jon suggests himself and John Rich. Marlee also chooses herself and John Rich, as does Meat Loaf. So, we’re assuming John Rich is going to make it through!
Because of his initial answer to the past winners, not naming himself as part of the final two, Lil Jon is fired.
Next, Trump has the three remaining celebs tell him why he should choose them to stay in the competition. After they each give their answers, the Donald fires Meat Loaf, who gives a tearful thank you to Trump before leaving.
So, it’s now down to John Rich and Marlee Matlin.
The next day, the final two meet with Donald Trump to get the details of their task. They will be helping to launch 7-Up Retro by first designing the product’s packaging and in-store display. Next, they’ll write, create, and produce a commercial for 7-Up Retro, then plan an event to celebrate the product’s launch. One of the contestants will be using the 70s as inspiration for their task and working with the Harlem Globetrotters, while the other will team up with Def Leopard and use the 80s. Both charities will be given $50,000 from 7-Up for making it this far in the competition.
And some more good news– they’ll have a little help from their friends throughout the task: La Toya Jackson, Richard Hatch, Meat Loaf, Lil Jon, Mark McGrath and Star Jones.
Having raised more money, Marlee Matlin gets the opportunity to select her decade and she surprisingly chooses the 70s and the Harlem Globetrotters, which John Rich feels gives him an advantage as a musician working with other musicians. Marlee, on the other hand, says that her love of sports, the 70s, and the more visual aspect of them both, gives her the upperhand.
John Rich is then given the first pick of team members, and he immediately gets Lil Jon, then rounds out his team with Mark McGrath and Star Jones.
Marlee chooses Meat Loaf, thinking that he’s a perfect fit for the 70s theme, then goes on to include Richard Hatch and La Toya Jackson.
The teams quickly get to work, but while Marlee’s trying to brainstorm ideas for the product packaging, Meat Loaf’s major concern is the concept of the commercial, where he wants to be dressed in a fairy costume. After tabling his idea, Marlee gets the team back on track and lets them know her thoughts — which somehow turns into more talk about the commercial.
John Rich’s team is much further along. The country star immediately comes up with a tag line, and has already assigned tasks to his team members. Soon after, they also decide on a design for their can. Lil Jon is in charge of the commercial concept, but he’s having trouble coming up with ideas. Luckily, Mark McGrath suggests something that the entire team loves, and John Rich starts to think of people he knows that scream 80s. They want Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider — there’s only one problem — he has a lot of facial hair for his role in Rock of Ages, which he’s contractually obligated to keep. John pleads with him to ask if he can shave in order to wear his makeup for the commercial, and moments later, he calls back to tell them that he’s been given the green light to get rid of the hair.
Marlee’s team begins to make some headway, but again, Meat Loaf is taking over, which Ivanka Trump worries might ruin things for Matlin as they did in the previous challenge. But once Marlee sends Meat and La Toya to go shopping for costumes, she’s able to start making some decisions of her own.
When Meat Loaf and La Toya Jackson return from the store, however, Meat isn’t happy when he sees that the box design has been changed. He tells Marlee that he’s against the new design, but she sticks to her guns.
Getting some star power of their own, Marlee’s team finds an old 7-Up commercial starring Geoffrey Holder, and call him to see if he’d be able to help them with their task. Thankfully, he’s willing to do it.
Both teams rush to shoot their commercials, but with Meat Loaf in charge of the creative for Marlee’s team, things are starting to get a little strange, and John Rich is concerned that his team is taking too long.
Time is starting to run out for Marlee’s team too, as they wait for Geoffrey Holder to arrive.
Just as they’re getting the commercial wrapped up, John Rich begins to hit a few snags when everyone needs his help on their individual tasks, and the tour manager of Def Leopard doesn’t see eye to eye with him on the band’s role at the event.
And Meat Loaf once again goes ballistic when he finds out that Geoffrey Holder’s lawyer is keeping him from being able to shoot the commercial, citing an issue with his contract. With no Geoffrey Holder, Marlee has no commercial.
How will she and John manage to pull things together?
Tune in next week for the season finale to find out!
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Photo credit: NBC